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Is Black Edition worth the money?

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June 23, 2008 11:56:07 PM

I have an AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+ (Socket AM2), but I can't games as well as I would wish, even with this new Nvidia 9600GT i bought. I was thinking I could buy at 5000+ Black Edition and cool it with a XIGMATEK HDT-S1283 120mm Rifle CPU Cooler to overclock it to 3.2 or mabye even 3.4 GHz. How much of a performance increase will I get? Is the heatsink good? Also, what multiplier setting do I need to put it on to get 3.2 or 3.4 GHz (As high as the heatsink can handle at least)? Is it worth $80 for the unlocked processor?
a c 83 à CPUs
June 24, 2008 12:06:47 AM

I'm kinda mixed on the BE CPUs. If you already have a quality CPU cooler, then they are very worth it. If you don't, and need to spend another $30+ on a cooler, then the benefits of the BE go down quite a bit. At this point, its better to just shovel the $30 into a better CPU, and overclock that. The K8 arch seems to top out at ~3.2. If you want anything higher, you usually have to switch to peltier or water cooling. I don't normally suggest that, as even then most people top out at 3.4-3.6GHz.

There is no point in buying a BE CPU and run it "stock". OVERCLOCK the sucker, what are you waiting for?
June 24, 2008 12:07:36 AM

What speed are you getting right now on your X2 5000+?

What happens if you reduce some of the graphic quality settings?
Does Game play improve? If so, you are not CPU bound.

The 5000+ is not a bad CPU.
Not great, but it likely will not hold you back too much.

I suspect you are still GPU bound.
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June 24, 2008 12:09:44 AM

What games and resolutions?
June 24, 2008 12:10:18 AM

I don't think so.
I recommend e7200. newegg has it for 129. you can over clock it to 3.4ghz and it's a beast >e8400.
June 24, 2008 12:13:00 AM

uutorok said:
I don't think so.
I recommend e7200. newegg has it for 129. you can over clock it to 3.4ghz and it's a beast >e8400.

Exactly, current AMD cpus don't overclock that well. The price increase of black edition plus cost of a good cooler is more than that extra bit of performance is worth.
June 24, 2008 12:14:59 AM

+1 for the intel cpus
June 24, 2008 12:19:30 AM

You already have a 64 X2 5000+ so spending money on a black edition of the exact same CPU is just stupid and won't give you a significant performance increase for the money.
In the long run, you'd be better off upgrading to a 6000+ or 6400+ or switching to a Intel Core2
June 24, 2008 1:18:01 AM

I am with zenmaster.

I think you are more GPU bound, than CPU bound in your gaming. Unless you are playing games that need large amount of CPU cycles, like Supreme Commander, then your 9600 GT could be your weak link.

What resolutions are you playing at? What exactly in your gaming is not up to par?

To get a BE with the same freq, as Robarino mentioned, is not a wise move. The 6000+ or 6400+ would be a better upgrade, than getting the 5000+ BE.

Also, don't consider Intel CPUs, unless you are willing to do a new build, with mobo and CPU.
June 24, 2008 1:19:11 AM

Well here's the thing.

I don't have the money to get a new Intel motherboard. But I may be able to get the money to buy just and AMD processor, since I already have an AMD motherboard. Perhaps I should rephrase the question:

I have an AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+. I want to buy the Black Edition version instead. If I overclock it 3.2 or mabye 3.4 GHz, how much of a performace increase will I get in the following games (1680x1050)?

Crysis (runs at 10 FPS Very High)
Unreal 3 (Runs at 50-60 FPS almost maxed)
Trackmania (33 FPS Medium/High settings (often goes down to 15))
Call of Duty 4 (Runs at 30- 40 FPS Maxed with AA 4x (outdoor heavy battle))
Spore (30 FPS Maxed)
Source Engine (70 FPS Maxed including AA at max)
World in Conflict (14 FPS Very High)

I have an AMD motherboard, but I don't want to have to buy a new intel one.
I also want to buy a XIGMATEK HDT-S1283 120mm Rifle CPU Cooler, but will it be able to handle the heat of this processor running at 3.2, 3.4, or mabye even 3.6 GHz? If not, what heat sink should I get (that doesn't cost a lot of money)?

By the way, I have seen charts around the internet showing an overclocked 5000+ BE getting a 20 frame increase over stock settings in many games. Enough to wipe out lag in all of my games.

My system:

AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+ Regular with stock heatsink
3 GB DDR2 RAM 667 MHz
Nvidia GeForce 9600GT Overclocked (Core at 740 MHz)
Asus NARRA2 AMD motherboard
500GB Seagate Barracuda 7200RPM Hard Drive
Thermaltake Purepower 500W PSU
Microsoft Windows Build 6001 (Vista SP1)

How else can I improve my gaming performace for free or cheap?
June 24, 2008 1:24:14 AM

in many cases yes - its a better bin and sometimes its even a better deal

most blacks are good deals!
a b à CPUs
June 24, 2008 1:36:19 AM

Just overclock your current AMD chip. Its really stupid for you get the black edition now. Sure it may overclock easy'r but you could probally got close to same overlock now for free.

The op is on budget. There is no need to even consider going over to intel. Heck aint even a good reason as far as im concerned to get a new k8 either.
June 24, 2008 1:39:01 AM

someguy7 said:
Just overclock your current AMD chip. Its really stupid for you get the black edition now. Sure it may overclock easy'r but you could probally got close to same overlock now for free.

The op is on budget. There is no need to even consider going over to intel. Heck aint even a good reason as far as im concerned to get a new k8 either.


Well how do I overclock a processor when the multiplier is locked?
a c 108 à CPUs
June 24, 2008 1:45:46 AM

Is Black Edition worth the money? Yes.

But in your case it doesn't make any sense. Your X2 5000+ will overclock almost as high as the BE version. It just takes a little work.

Drop your HT to x4 (CPU-->NB), lock the the NB-->SB frequency at 200Mhz and raise your cpu clock to 215MHz. Your cpu will operate at 2.8GHz (with your ram at DDR2 800 spec).

If your are not running DDR2 800 ram that is one of your problems. $40 will get you 2Gb of DDR2 800 - probably $70-$80 for 4Gb.

At stock volts you should be able to approach 3GHz. HOWEVER, above 2.8GHz you will have to drop your memory freq from 400-->333 and loosen your ram timings a bit.

From your 215MHz cpu clock you may begin raising your speed in 5MHz increments. Each 5MHz will give you an overall cpu clock speed increase of 65MHz. Use CPUz to monitor your performance and always keep an eye on your system temps.

When you hit the wall with your cpu clock (the system becomes unstable or will not boot) you need to raise your cpu volts from stock 1.312v to 1.375v (and .025v increments after that).

Return to increasing the cpu clock in 5MHz steps at 1.375v. Keep an eye on your temps. When you hit the wall give the volts another bump and keep on tweakin'. I don't like to go above 1.45v but some folks truck on up to 1.5v.

Cpu clock of 245MHz is basicly 3.2GHz overall. You may need to upgrade your cooling to hit this mark.

You also need to run Orthos/Prime to check stabilty while your monitor your temps.

If you have any questions check out the AMD section of Tom's Overclocking Forum. (and look out for bad advice :)  )


For the Intel Fanboys and thread-crappers: Get a Life.
a b à CPUs
June 24, 2008 1:50:01 AM

Yup, What wisecracker said. As long as your mobo is up to task all should be fine
June 24, 2008 2:06:18 AM

Wisecracker said:
Drop your HT to x4 (CPU-->NB), lock the the NB-->SB frequency at 200Mhz and raise your cpu clock to 215MHz. Your cpu will operate at 2.8GHz (with your ram at DDR2 800 spec).


I don't know how to do that. Can you show me how?

Also, what's the best way to monitor CPU temperature?

Edit: I just recieved word from HP that the idiots they hired to make the computers made sure to disable any form of CPU overclocking though the motherboard's BIOS, requiring me to buy a new motherboard if i want to overclock. There's no point in this anymore.
a c 83 à CPUs
June 24, 2008 12:01:59 PM

Now you know why people build their own and avoid OEMs. Sorry for the bad news.
June 24, 2008 6:01:33 PM

Well at least you found out before you put down you cash!
a b à CPUs
June 25, 2008 3:37:22 PM

uutorok said:
I don't think so.
I recommend e7200. newegg has it for 129. you can over clock it to 3.4ghz and it's a beast >e8400.


I know this thread is over, but I have to /chuckle at this recommendation. :lol: 
June 26, 2008 4:08:35 PM

I'm going with GPU Bound.

I use an 8800GT with a 2.8Ghz OC'd x2 4200+ @ 2.8 Ghz and I am almost never GPU Bound in the games I play. I've played AOC, Crysis, ect. Usually I am both GPU and Processor bound for better performance which is how it should be. In Age of Conan, for instance, I hover at about 90% CPU Usage.

This thread is a lot like other threads i've been seeing lately. I think the more appropriate question to ask is what resolution do you play at, and are you actually hitting 100% CPU Usage in the games you play?

Also my post here is very relevant to your situation. http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/251350-28-what-weak-link-system#t1832501.

In General I do recommend an Overclock to at least 3Ghz if you can pull it off, and if you can maybe pick up another 9600GT, or even possibly Reurn it and get a better video card. at 3.2Ghz (assuming you can make it there) Your system can probably handle the better GPU.

June 26, 2008 5:36:04 PM

X2 5000 BE is a very good value. However, upgrading from a X2 5000 to an X2 5000BE seems kind of weird. I'd feel more comfortable if you had a slower processor, the difference would be greater.
July 11, 2008 1:08:48 PM

just overclock the one you already have. you should be able to get it alot higher without even changing the voltage. i managed to get my 4200+ to 2.9Ghz which is equal to the 5600+. i havent been able to get it any higher than that though.
a b à CPUs
July 11, 2008 4:45:03 PM

coolgamer512 said:
I have an AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+ (Socket AM2), but I can't games as well as I would wish, even with this new Nvidia 9600GT i bought. I was thinking I could buy at 5000+ Black Edition and cool it with a XIGMATEK HDT-S1283 120mm Rifle CPU Cooler to overclock it to 3.2 or mabye even 3.4 GHz. How much of a performance increase will I get? Is the heatsink good? Also, what multiplier setting do I need to put it on to get 3.2 or 3.4 GHz (As high as the heatsink can handle at least)? Is it worth $80 for the unlocked processor?


Is it worth it, debateable. However, you can overclock the BE on ANY motherboard that allows multiplier adjustment (no need to adjust frequency, which can be unstable with cheaper motherboards). I overclocked my BE from stock 2.6GHz to 3.2GHz using a multiplier of 16 (disable Cool'n'Quiet and Spread-Spectrum in the BIOS). I upped the voltage 0.05 volts from stock (i think this made it 1.35V). I made NO frequency changes. This allows my DDR2-800 memory to run at exactly 800MHz effective. I cooled my processor with a Thermaltake Mini-Typhoon (any equivalent cooler should work). What you get is a processor that runs 600MHz faster, without overstressing any other components in the system (Northbridge, Memory, PCIe, etc...). However, since you already have a 5000+, the minimal performance gain may not be worth it.

If you wanted to spend a little more, and your motherboard supports it, I would buy a Phenom 9850 BE and overclock that on the multiplier (should get to 3.2GHz easily, and it's more future-proof with 4 cores). You won't see much gaming benefit today from the extra cores, but it should be better in the future, depending on what your options for a full-system upgrade are in the future. Otherwise, first see if your motherboard can handle frequency overclocking and try the methods explained by the others. If you can get 3.2GHz on frequency adjustments (and lower multiplier) alone, then no, the BE is not worth it.
a c 126 à CPUs
July 11, 2008 6:14:17 PM

Just to let ya know...... that 20 FPS will more than likely be in most games but not in Crysis.

Its not as worth it to upgrade to a BE as it is to buy a new CPU and Mobo. But if you are really intent on it then get the 5000+ BE and have a go at OCing it.
!